Honors College

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Publication Date



Written as a reference for parents and both present and future early childhood educators, this compilation of studies and accompanying resources is intended to clarify misconceptions and build individual understandings of phonological and phonemic awareness. The relationship between phonemic awareness instruction and stronger reading and spelling abilities has been well established; however, most previous studies of phonemic awareness have utilized educators or trained researchers as the primary instructors and have focused mainly on school aged children ranging from preschool to grade three. The purpose of this review was to extrapolate the potential effects of placing parents in the role of lead instructor of phonemic awareness for children ranging from birth to age 5, as well as to create a set of parent resources informed by this research. The main source of evidence was the National Reading Panel’s meta-analysis of phonemic awareness studies published in 2001. This review and subsequent generalization indicates that through joint participation in phonemically focused phonological awareness activities, in addition to reading aloud regularly, parents have the potential to positively influence their child’s later ability to read and spell.